I have a post sitting in my draft folder. A post about the most ridiculous camping trip I’ve ever experienced, and by ridiculous I mean terrible, but I don’t really want to admit it was terrible, so I’m going to call it ridiculous. I have this half-written post sitting there, but in the course of getting to the half-way point I realized I just couldn’t do it. I couldn’t write an entire post dedicated to the telling of this camping trip in narrative form.
First, y’all wouldn’t read something that spanned the course of 10,000 words! Nu-uh.
And, second, there was more to the story than just telling the details of a camping trip gone wrong.
So, I decided to summarize the hilarity or calamity, if you will, of our BIG two-day Pre-4th of July vacation with the coveted ease of bullet points…like this:
- When I picked up Maycee from the Club Wednesday afternoon, she had a bruised nose full of splinters from doing a flip that landed her face down in the wood chips. This was a sign. I ignored it.
- We got to Lake Cachuma, where I had reserved our spot, only to find we were right next to a huge family. Every other spot was empty. Ironic.
- Maycee developed a cold the first night. No further comment necessary.
- We were ravaged by a GIGANTIC raccoon who felt he just HAD to finish off the trail mix left in a bag inside of a closed Tupper Ware bin,but also wanted to play percussion with the rest of our camping gear. At 2:00AM. It was loud-not that either of us were sleeping.
- 20-somethings love saying the F-word while in the bushes doing who knows what at 3:00 in the morning. A lot. For hours. With the raccoon.
- Maycee’s cold got worse, but we tried to enjoy the next day at the campground walking the lake shore, checking out the Nature Center, shopping at the little market for cough drops, and going into town for a bite to eat.
- The campground went from empty to full within a New York minute.
- While away in town, somebody figured we wouldn’t need our fire log that night and removed it from our fire pit. The only fire log we had. They were wrong. Maycee described the language flying out of my mouth at that point as ONE BIG BLEEP.
- I played Daniel Boone trying to make fire from twigs and wood pieces, oh, and paper towels, park maps, and throw-away realty books I’d picked up in town. I succeeded in making a smoke ring, crying out for help. Nobody came.
- Our huge family neighbors tripled in size….and volume level.
- We made s’mores from smoke-called smoky s’mores. I need a marketing agent for this flavor.
- Maycee’s cold continued to worsen, so she crashed in the tent while I enjoyed the neighbor’s grand kids driving their electric Jeep through our campsite, as well as the sounds of every other huge family gearing up for the 4th of July. Awwwwwwe, the tranquility of the beautiful outdoors.
- The next morning Maycee and I packed up our campsite faster than we ever had before in our lives and laughed as Ariana Grande’s song “Problem” came on the radio while we were driving home.
- We turned it up. We sang along.
- “I GOT ONE LESS PROBLEM WITHOUT YA!”
That was it. Two planned vacation days come and gone like the wind.
As we walked through the door of the Yellow Submarine we let out a sigh of relief. We both cleaned up, and I unpacked while Maycee climbed onto the couch to rest.
And, while I had wanted to take some kind of vacation somewhere this summer, like all of my friends, I now valued the solitude of my own home. The quiet. The comfort. The peace.
The rest of the weekend we didn’t do much with Maycee being sick. I gardened, laid on the chaise lounge, played ball with Percy, finished an upholstery project, and watched the 4th of July fireworks on TV. It was bliss, actually. I even called into the barn and had folks cover for me so Maycee could truly rest. No schedule. No agenda. No demands.
I figured, if nothing else, that this ridiculous camping trip would be great material for my blog. But, it was also a reminder that sometimes “getting away” isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be-that a true vacation (to me) is simply taking a break from the regular routine of life, which can happen right in the middle of your own backyard (or living room). And, after this trip, it’s a reminder I will not forget. Not for a long, long time.
So, even though Lake Cachuma was a bust, and we won’t be traversing the miles to Alaska or New York or Florida or Oregon or Utah or Montana or any of the other summer destinations of those we know, I’m happy to say I’m grateful.
Best laid plans and crazy raccoons…
If you have any summer vacation stories gone awry, I sure would love to hear about them! And, otherwise, remember Readers, that life is short–waaaaay too short to be upset for long about crappy camping trips. Be happy, and give a chuckle at my expense. C’mon! (Wink.)